raz-rassel-singer-guitarist-prs-594

Hi! I’m Raz.

I enjoy making music.

I started playing guitar in my early teens, learning 70’s and 80’s hard rock guitar songs. Rush, Van Halen, Led Zepplin, Dio, Ozzy, and Black Sabbath were early influences. During high school, I joined an 80’s Metal cover band and began performing at parties and festivals. For my 17th birthday, I bought a 4-track cassette recorder, which spawned of love for recording music. Producing multi-track music recordings helped me become a better musician and singer. As my playing developed, I began learning Yngwie Malmsteen, whose guitar style was so intoxicating that it sort of hijacked my playing style. But a few years later I began studying Eric Johnson, and his unique fusion style evened out my playing. I continued playing in various cover bands, then pursued a career as a professional musician and toured the Midwest and Canada for several years with Hard Rock bands. Performing on the road in front of audiences, several days per week, made me a more practiced and proficient musician and singer. I enjoy the energy of live performance. But the thrill is fleeting, and it can lose it’s luster after time.

Recording music has long been my first love. I feel it’s the best part of being a musician. Composing, arranging and performing to create music that is unique, and fun. Over the years I’ve recorded a lot of music, and this website is my personal archive.

Alex Lifeson of Rush was a huge guitar influence in my early years. His clean chorused rhythms were beautiful, his distorted rhythms were iconic and his guitar solos were uniquely amazing. Jimmy Page was another big early influence. I remember Warrant’s guitarist said, “I try to make new licks that no one has done before, but Jimmy Page already did them all.” Eddie Van Halen was probably my biggest influence and his revolutionary sound drove me to become a better guitarist. I learned the first two Ozzy albums to study the guitar style of Randy Rhoads, where I was introduced to the Harmonic Minor scale. I bought my 1973 Gibson Les Paul Custom because that’s what Randy Rhoads played. I learned Dio’s first 2 solo albums because we all loved Dio back in the 80’s. I felt a kinship with Vivian Cambell’s raw guitar style, and he is probably my second biggest influence after Van Halen.